NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) – Veracyte reported after the close of the market on Tuesday that its first quarter 2018 revenues rose 22 percent year over year
For the three months ended March 31, the genomic testing firm reported total revenues of $20.0, compared to $16.4 million in Q1 2017, beating analysts' average estimate of $18.0 million.
"We had a great quarter in which we beat revenue and genomic test volume growth expectations and generated strong momentum across our business," Bonnie Anderson, chairman and CEO of Veracyte, said in a statement.
Veracyte reported 6,864 genomic tests in Q1 2018, an 18 percent growth over the 5,817 tests it ran in Q1 2017, and transitioned around 70 percent of its thyroid testing business to its Afirma Genomic Sequencing Classifier assay. Total test volumes included 6,649 Afirma tests and 215 Percepta tests. Anderson said during a call with investors that the company is on track to build up to a Q4 run rate of between 500 and 1,000 Percepta tests.
In addition, Veracyte gained in-network status with Anthem and grew business for its pulmonology Percepta test.
As a result, the company increased its full year revenue guidance to a range of $83 million to $86 million from a previous range of $81 million to $83 million.
Anderson said that the company has launched an early access program for its Envisia Genomic Classifier test for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis prior to a planned commercial ramp next year after "anticipated Medicare coverage." She added that the company plans to discuss additional data surrounding this test as well as another new test — the previously discussed Afirma Xpression Atlas test — at several scientific meetings during the year.
Importantly, Anderson said, the extensive data that the company has been building on thyroid cancers and lung nodules has "uniquely positioned [the company] to provide valuable information to developers of targeted therapies." The collaboration the firm struck with Loxo Oncology this year is one such example of the potential for thyroid cancer ,and Anderson noted that the firm anticipates additional opportunities within the lung cancer space.
For Q1 2018 Veracyte recognized a net loss of $9.2 million, or $.27 per share, up from $8.2 million, or $.24 per share, in Q1 2017. It missed Wall Street's average estimate of a $.25 loss per share.
The firm's R&D expenses in the quarter were $3.7 million, down almost 8 percent from $4.0 million in the prior-year period. SG&A expenses climbed 28 percent to $17.2 million in Q1 2018 from $13.4 million in Q1 2017. The increase was primarily due to a ramp up in the firm's field sales team to 71 people from 48, Veracyte Chief Financial Officer Keith Kennedy said during the call.
The company finished the quarter with $27.2 million in cash and cash equivalents. In Wednesday morning trading, Veracyte's stock was down less than 1 percent on the Nasdaq at $6.11.